International Intellectual Property

International Intellectual Property

A Handbook of Contemporary Research

Research Handbooks in Intellectual Property series

Edited by Daniel J. Gervais

International Intellectual Property: A Handbook of Contemporary Research provides researchers and practitioners of international intellectual property law with the necessary tools to understand the latest debates in this incredibly dynamic and complex field. The book contains both doctrinal analyses and groundbreaking theoretical research by many of the most recognized leading experts in the field. It offers overviews of the major international instruments, with specific chapters on the Berne and Paris Conventions, the Patent Cooperation treaty and several chapters that discuss parts of the TRIPS Agreement. The book can also be used by students of international intellectual property to obtain useful knowledge of major institutions and instruments, and to gain an understanding of ongoing discussions.

Chapter 13: Anti-dilution protection of luxury brands in the global economy

Haochen Sun

Subjects: law - academic, intellectual property law, public international law


In June 2008, the Paris Commercial Court held eBay secondarily liable for offering online venues to sell counterfeit Louis Vuitton products. In particular, the court ruled that eBay had harmed the reputation of Louis Vuitton’s trademarks. On the other side of the Atlantic, eBay was sued in the United States (US) by another luxury company, Tiffany, for facilitating the sale of counterfeit Tiffany products on the eBay website. In this case, the Southern District Court of New York ruled in favor of eBay, holding that eBay did not harm the reputation of the Tiffany trademark. Why did these two factually similar trademark dilution cases yield judicial decisions that were at odds with each other? This chapter aims to explore the policy responsible for this rift. It reveals that the rift is actually the tip of the iceberg in the global anti-dilution protection of luxury brands. In fact, luxury companies face two major challenges in securing adequate anti-dilution protection. At the international level, the major intellectual property treaties do not afford clear-cut minimum standards for anti-dilution protection of well-known trademarks. At the domestic level, divergences in anti-dilution protections in the world’s three main luxury markets – the European Union (EU), the US, and China – have rendered it more difficult for luxury companies to prevent dilution of their brands.

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